Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa will apparently demand significant investment in his playing squad before pledging his future to the newly-promoted club.
The mercurial Argentinian did not want to focus on his own situation after guiding the Whites back into the top flight, instead deflecting attention on his squad and the fans.
The 65-year-old is out of contract at Elland Road this week after signing a one-year rolling deal last summer after Leeds lost out in the play-offs.
Bielsa asked for “time” in order to think “more clearly” about his future in West Yorkshire.
In that time The Sun claimed Lionel Messi wants Barcelona to go all out to try to tempt Bielsa way from Yorkshire to take over from Quique Setien.
Leeds have failed to comment though and Bielsa is understood to be focused on where he needs to strengthen ahead of next season.
And Argentinian outlet Infobae report that Bielsa will soon be ready to negotiate a new contract and he will sit down “eye to eye” with Andrea Radrizzani, Victor Orta and Angus Kinnear without any representatives.
The source claim Bielsa will have no problems accepting a deal on the proviso his transfer demands are met.
The former Athletic Bilbao boss wants significant investment from Radrizzani, who has already made the loans of Illan Meslier and Helder Costa permanent.
Bielsa will draw up the areas of the team he wants improving and then pen a list of up to five names for each position, per the report.
It’s said, via Sport Witness “the first name will normally be an unlikely target, which the Whites won’t be able to sign due to financial reasons. The second will be a more realistic one. And from the third to the fifth, it’ll be getting more possible”.
The Rosario-born coach will also ask that Leeds resist all offers for their top players, and if not he will have no issue with walking away.
Bielsa named Champ manager of the year
Meanwhile, Bielsa was named Championship manager of the year at LMA Awards on Monday night.
“Good evening. First of all I wish to apologise for not delivering this message in English,” Bielsa said in a pre-recorded interview on Sky.
“Secondly I would like to say thank you for this award. It’s of special importance to me because the votes were cast by the coaches in the league that Leeds have won
“The fact that my colleagues have recognised my contribution is so important to me.
“Awards are usually recognition for achievements by a particular team. In this case it’s the recognition of the title Leeds have won.
“I know how much help on the path towards this achievement that I have received. I’d like to thank the club and the authorities who hired me for the chance to work in English football.”